Monday, 27 June 2016

Exercise in pregnancy

The more active and fit you are during pregnancy, the easier it will be for you to adapt to your changing shape and weight gain. It will also help you to cope with labour and get back into shape after the birth.

Keep up your normal daily physical activity or exercise (sport, running, yoga, dancing, or even walking to the shops and back) for as long as you feel comfortable. Exercise is not dangerous for your baby – there is some evidence that active women are less likely to experience problems in later pregnancy and labour.

Exercise tips for pregnancy

Don’t exhaust yourself. You may need to slow down as your pregnancy progresses or if your maternity team advises you to. If in doubt, consult your maternity team. As a general rule, you should be able to hold a conversation as you exercise when pregnant. If you become breathless as you talk, then you're probably exercising too strenuously.

If you weren't active before you got pregnant, don’t suddenly take up strenuous exercise. If you start an aerobic exercise programme (such as running, swimming, cycling, walking or aerobics classes), tell the instructor that you're pregnant and begin with no more than 15 minutes of continuous exercise, three times a week. Increase this gradually to at least four 30-minute sessions a week.

Remember that exercise doesn't have to be strenuous to be beneficial.
Exercise tips when you're pregnant:
  • always warm up before exercising, and cool down afterwards
  • try to keep active on a daily basis: half an hour of walking each day can be enough, but if you can't manage that, any amount is better than nothing
  • avoid any strenuous exercise in hot weather
  • drink plenty of water and other fluids
  • if you go to exercise classes, make sure your teacher is properly qualified, and knows that you’re pregnant as well as how many weeks pregnant you are
  • you might like to try swimming because the water will support your increased weight.  Some local swimming pools provide aquanatal classes with qualified instructors. Find your local sport and fitness services or go visit
  • exercises that have a risk of falling, such as horse riding, downhill skiing, ice hockey, gymnastics and cycling, should only be done with caution. Falls may risk damage to the baby

Exercises to avoid in pregnancy

  • don't lie flat on your back, particularly after 16 weeks, because the weight of your bump presses on the main blood vessel bringing blood back to your heart and this can make you feel faint
  • don't take part in contact sports where there's a risk of being hit, such as kickboxing, judo or squash
  • don't go scuba diving, because the baby has no protection against decompression sickness and gas embolism (gas bubbles in the bloodstream)
  • don't exercise at heights over 2,500m above sea level until you have acclimatised: this is because you and your baby are at risk of altitude sickness

Exercises for a fitter pregnancy

If you are pregnant, try to fit the exercises listed below into your daily routine. They will strengthen your muscles so that you can carry the extra weight of pregnancy. They'll also make your joints stronger, improve circulation, ease backache, and generally help you feel well.

Stomach-strengthening exercises

As your baby gets bigger, you may find that the hollow in your lower back increases and this can give you backache. These exercises strengthen stomach (abdominal) muscles and may ease backache, which can be a problem in pregnancy:

  • start in a box position (on all fours) with knees under hips, hands under shoulders, with fingers facing forward and abdominals lifted to keep your back straight
  • pull in your stomach muscles and raise your back up towards the ceiling, curling the trunk and allowing your head to relax gently forward. Don't let your elbows lock
  • hold for a few seconds then slowly return to the box position
  • take care not to hollow your back: it should always return to a straight/neutral position
  • do this slowly and rhythmically 10 times, making your muscles work hard and moving your back carefully
  • only move your back as far as you can comfortably
  • Pelvic tilt exercises

    • stand with your shoulders and bottom against a wall
    • keep your knees soft
    • pull your tummy button towards your spine, so that your back flattens against the wall: hold for four seconds and release
    • repeat up to 10 times

    Pelvic floor exercises

    Pelvic floor exercises help to strengthen the muscles of the pelvic floor, which come under great strain in pregnancy and childbirth. The pelvic floor consists of layers of muscles that stretch like a supportive hammock from the pubic bone (in front) to the end of the backbone.

    If your pelvic floor muscles are weak, you may find that you leak urine when you cough, sneeze or strain. This is quite common and you needn’t feel embarrassed. It's known as stress incontinence and it can continue after pregnancy.

    By performing pelvic floor exercises, you can strengthen the muscles. This helps to reduce or avoid stress incontinence after pregnancy. All pregnant women should do pelvic floor exercises, even if you're young and not suffering from stress incontinence now.
    How to do pelvic floor exercises:

  • close up your anus as if you're trying to prevent a bowel movement
  • at the same time, draw in your vagina as if you're gripping a tampon, and your urethra as if to stop the flow of urine
  • at first, do this exercise quickly, tightening and releasing the muscles immediately
  • then do it slowly, holding the contractions for as long as you can before you relax: try to count to 10
  • try to do three sets of eight squeezes every day: to help you remember, you could do a set at each meal
  • As well as these exercises, practise tightening up the pelvic floor muscles before and during coughing and sneezing.

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    You're pregnant! Here's what may come next.

    The first 12 weeks of pregnancy take some adjusting to, here’s some things that may head your way.

    10 things that may happen in your first 12 weeks of pregnancy

    Not to be found in books, these are the things no one really tells you

    Now you’re pregnant

    • …this could be what’s coming…
    Woman feeling sick leaning over toilet

    Ah, so you’ve found out your pregnant, peed on the stick and those two blue lines have appeared. So exciting! But are you prepared for what you may face in the next few weeks of pregnancy?

    Although many will tell you they glowed in the early months, the reality for many is quite different.
    Here are 10 things about the first 12 weeks of pregnancy it’s worth knowing…just in case!

    1. Hypochondria may take over

    Every twinge, headache or trapped wind will have you in full blown panic mode that something is wrong with you and you debate whether it’s quicker to get a lift to the hospital or wait for an ambulance.

    2. The skin of a teenager

    Yep, you could wake up one morning and your face may resemble the acne teenage stage you had spent the past 10 years blotting out of your mind. It won’t last. It’s those hormones to blame! 

    3. Morning sickness is badly named

    Don’t be under any disillusions that come midday all sickness and nausea will miraculously disappear until the next day. Whoever came up with the name morning sickness clearly had an easy run of it!

    4. A very new meaning of a late night

    A few months back your idea of a late night would probably have involved some alcohol, perhaps a little dance and hearing birds singing as you finally hit the sack. Now, a late night is trying to keep your eyes open through the last credits of EastEnders and wondering why they need to put a soap on so late at night, wait what? Oh yes, it’s only 8pm.

    5. You understand the word ‘HANGRY’

    This may have seemed a bizarre term before you were pregnant but now being so hungry that it makes you angry, makes perfect sense. And you can switch from your normal self to hangry in a matter of minutes.

    6. You’ll go through the ‘has she put on weight or is she pregnant stage’

    That time in the first 12 weeks when you are definitely on your way to getting a bump but it’s not quite formed yet. You feel you have to explain to everyone you meet that you haven’t eaten all the pies, but can’t tell them why you’ve put on weight.

    7. The alcohol realisation

    At some point in your first 12 weeks of pregnancy you may soberly look at all your friends having a few drinks and realise it may feel a long time before you can enjoy a glass of wine with them again, and they definitely seemed a funnier bunch when you were drinking with them!

    8. You pretend to join in

    Pouring a caffeine free coke to join in with your friends while pretending you already put the vodka in to throw them off the scent of asking if you’re pregnant.

    9. Decaf has nothing on caf

    Switching to decaf coffee is not a good switch, there really is no comparison.

    10. Hibernation is so appealing

    You suddenly have a new found understanding of why animals hibernate in the winter, what a great idea.

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    India Bihar 'exam topper' sent to jail for cheating

    Ruby Rai with police after her arrest
    An Indian student has been sent to jail for cheating after she failed a retest.

    Ruby Rai, 17, ranked first in the Bihar state exams - but said in a video interview that her main subject political science was about cooking.

    After the video went viral, Ms Rai was made to re-sit her exams, and was arrested after she failed and had her original results cancelled.

    She was produced in court on Sunday where a magistrate sent her to jail until 8 July.

    The decision to send her to prison has been criticised given that she is a minor and should, therefore, be sent to a detention home for juveniles.

    The Hindu newspaper quoted Senior Superintendent of Police Manu Maharaj as saying that Ms Rai would have to "prove" that she was a minor. He did not specify how.
    One state minister told reporters that authorities needed to make the system accountable instead of punishing students.

    Meanwhile, arrest warrants have been issued for several other students who performed well in the exams, including Saurabh Shrestha who topped the science stream, but later could not say that H2O was water.

    The AFP news agency quoted police as saying that another 18 people had been arrested.
    Examiners who retested Ms Rai told reporters they were "shocked" by her performance. When asked to write an essay about the Indian poet Tulsidas, she only wrote "Tulsidas ji pranam (Salutations to Tulsidas)".

    Last year, parents of students in the state were photographed climbing school walls to pass on answers.
    The embarrassed state government had announced tough measures like fines and jail terms, intended to curb cheating this year.

    The markedly lower pass rate seen in the results announced last month was taken as an indication that the steps had worked.
    That is, of course, until the footage of Ms Rai's interview was aired.

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    US: Strict Texas abortion law struck down

    Protesters celebrate after the US Supreme Court strikes down a restrictive 2012 Texas abortion law.
    US Supreme Court hands down the first major abortion ruling since 2007.

    The US Supreme Court has struck down a 2013 Texas abortion law that imposed restrictive regulations on the procedure.

    The law requires doctors who perform abortions to have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals and clinics to maintain hospital-like conditions.

    Republicans contended the law protects women while advocates argued the measures restricts access to abortions.

    The key decision is the first major abortion ruling since 2007.

    Justice Anthony Kennedy sided with the court's liberals in the 5-3 decision, which marked the first time the High Court has limited state abortion legislation in more than 15 years.

    Nearly a thousand people gathered in front of the Supreme Court in the hot sun, holding signs and dancing to a Beyonce-heavy playlist.

    At times, the pro-choice crowd's loud music and shouting drowned out chants of "we are the pro-life generation" from the other side.

    But when the Court handed down its decision invalidating Texas' abortion laws, those who say they fight for life took to the microphones outside the court to say they would not give up.

    "Women were hurt today," one said. "There are two victims to abortion, and my heart is breaking."
    A few feet away, women holding "keep abortion legal" and "The burden is undue" signs danced, screamed and sang in reaction to the court's decision, many of them in disbelief - several had feared a tie.

    The last time the top court issued a ruling on a major abortion case was nine years ago in a 5-4 decision to uphold a federal law banning a late-term abortion procedure.

    The Supreme Court legalised abortion nationwide in its landmark 1973 Roe v Wade ruling.
    The typically nine-justice court was one member short after the death of Justin Antonin Scalia earlier this year.

    Chief Justice John Roberts, Justice Clarence Thomas and Justice Samuel Alito dissented.

    In many parts of America, women have to travel for hours to get an abortion, because access to services is limited. Texas is one of those states.

    This decision strikes down laws which activists say were punitive and had no medical value. The majority opinion on the US Supreme Court may have agreed with that position, but this ruling alone can't change the deep divisions in America over the issue.

    More than four decades on from when the US Supreme court legalised abortion, many state legislatures continue to tighten access to it in other ways, such as reducing the time limits on when women can have one.

    Politicians in the state of Oklahoma recently voted to ban abortion but were later overturned by the state's governor. The strength of feeling there is mirrored across a number of southern states.
    In an election year, abortion is likely to be a key issue for debate - Hillary Clinton is a firm supporter of a woman's choice, while Donald Trump said he'd support measures which would criminalise doctors who carried out abortions.

    "By striking down politically motivated restrictions that made it nearly impossible for Texans to exercise their full reproductive rights, the court upheld every woman's right to safe, legal abortion, no matter where she lives," Democratic presumptive nominee Hillary Clinton said in a statement after the ruling.

    But Russell Moore, president of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, said the decision came "at the expense of children, women, and families".
    "Keeping abortion providers accountable should not be a political wedge issue. This ruling is further proof how much more work the pro-life movement has to do in the cause of life and human dignity." he said.

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    Tennis: Broady 1-5 Svitolina

    British number three Naomi Broady is under the cosh early doors against Elina Svitolina over on court three.

    Ukrainian Svitolina, seeded 17th, leads 5-1 in the first set.

    Broady has made it to round two at Wimbledon once before - in 2014.


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    Live now: Italy 0-0 Spain

    Andrea BarzagliReuters Spain get hold of the ball and enjoy some early possession as Cesc Fabregas feeds Nolito down the left but he slips too as he tries to deliver a cross, although I haven't been convinced by the Spanish striker this tournament. 

    Eder then shoots but his effort on the edge of the area is blocked.

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    F1 gossip: Ecclestone, Ricciardo, Brawn, Rosberg and Button

    Bernie Ecclestone
    Bernie Ecclestone's move will see Red Bull, Ferrari, Mercedes and McLaren lose their rights to historic bonus payments.

    F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone is preparing to change the way that "unfair" bonus payments are allocated, saying he is aiming to "come up with something more equal for all the teams".

    The new system could hit Ferrari, traditionally the best-paid team in the paddock, the hardest with as much as £60 million at stakeDan Istitene/Getty Images

    Bernie Ecclestone is preparing to scrap more than £150 million paid to the top four teams to wipe out inequality in the sport and give the smallest outfits a chance to compete.

    The Formula One chief executive is secretly preparing to wipe out historic bonus payments to Red Bull, Ferrari, McLaren and Mercedes to introduce a Premier League football-style system of flat payments plus prize money for performance.

    The new system could hit Ferrari, traditionally the best-paid team in the paddock, the hardest with as much as £60 million at stake. Red Bull would also face a massive loss after…

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    EU referendum petition hijacked by bots

    EU Petition

    An online petition calling for a second EU referendum has been hijacked by automated bots adding false signatures.

    Posts on the 4chan message board indicated that some users had scripted programs to automatically sign the petition.

    Thousands of signatures appeared to have come from people in Vatican City and Antarctica.
    The House of Commons petitions committee said it had removed 77,000 signatures and was investigating.

    UK Petitions website
    The petition has millions of signatures - but not all are real

    The petition currently has more than 3.6 million signatures, more than any other on the parliamentary website.

    Thousands of signatures from countries such as North Korea and the South Sandwich Islands have been removed, and a majority of the signatures now appear to come from the UK.

    But many could have been added by automated programs called bots and the petition continues to gather hundreds of signatures a minute.

    "With any online property that is designed for interaction, you need a mechanism in place to defeat automated means of adding content," said Rik Ferguson of computer security firm Trend Micro.
    "4chan is famous for this sort of mischief - and if websites don't have systems in place, they will get abused."

    "I voted 33,000 times"

    The government's petitions website does not appear to have a system in place to detect bots - such as a "captcha" picture that asks a user to recognise letters and numbers in an image, a task which is more difficult to automate.

    "It seems like a huge oversight for a website designed to be used by so many people to lack simple protection," said Mr Ferguson.

    Some members of the 4chan message board have claimed responsibility for the hijack.

    "I voted 33,000 times. Left a script running while I was taking a shower," wrote one member.
    Prime Minister David Cameron has already said there will be no second vote.

    The House of Commons petitions committee has said it will continue to monitor the petition for "suspicious activity".

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    Roller Coaster Crash: Two children in 'serious' condition

    Tsunami rideTwo boys who were among nine people injured in a rollercoaster crash at a North Lanarkshire theme park on Sunday remain in a serious condition.

    The ride derailed at M&D's, on the Motherwell side of Strathclyde Park.

    Two boys remain in a serious condition - a 12-year-old has chest, abdominal and leg injuries and an 11-year-old suffered serious arm and hand injuries.

    Four other boys, a 14-year-old girl and a 19-year-old man, are all stable in hospital, police said.
    A 19-year-old woman was released after treatment.

    'Serious incident'

    Det Insp John Malcolm said police wanted to speak to anyone who had witnessed the crash at 15:37 BST on Sunday.

    "This is a really serious incident that has affected many people visiting the theme park and our thoughts go out to those who have been injured," he said.

    "We have now launched a joint investigation with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and our priority is to find out the cause of the incident.

    "I would ask that anyone who witnessed the incident or indeed, anyone who may have video footage or photographs to get in touch with the dedicated inquiry team."

    Crash scene

    Police said the crash happened after five gondolas on the Tsunami inverted rollercoaster detached from their rails at a bend and fell to the ground.

    There were nine passengers on board - two 19-year-olds and seven children.

    A total of 10 people were taken to hospital in the aftermath of the crash.

    A 25-year-old woman who was passing-by was found not to be injured and was released from Wishaw General Hospital following an assessment.

    A 19-year-old woman who was treated for a wrist injury has been released.

    Three other children remain in a stable condition at Wishaw - a 14-year-old girl who suffered chest injuries, an 11-year-old boy who was kept in for observation and a 16-year-old boy who was treated for an injury to his arm.

    Crash scene

    The other casualties are being treated at two hospital in Glasgow.

    Four boys, two of whom are aged 11, one aged 12 and one aged 13, are being treated at the Royal Hospital for Children.

    In addition to the two who are in a serious condition, an 11-year-old, who suffered leg and head injuries, is stable, and a 13-year-old is being monitored.

    Investigation begins

    The 19-year-old man is being treated for a knee injury at Glasgow Royal Infirmary and is also stable.

    HSE principal inspector Barry Baker said a joint investigation with police was now under way.

    "Our thoughts are with the children and adults who have been injured in this incident and I must give praise to the emergency services and members of the public who came to their aid so quickly yesterday," he said.

    "We have brought HSE specialists in mechanical engineering to the site this morning, to begin the process of finding out what caused the gondolas to come off the rails.

    "HSE will work very closely with colleagues in the police as the investigation unfolds."

    Crash scene

    M&D's revealed that the Tsunami ride had been closed on Saturday due to a minor electrical fault but said it was fully operational when the park opened on Sunday.

    M&D's 'devastated'

    The park's director, Douglas Taylor, said: "Each and every ride within the theme park is safety checked on a daily basis and undergoes a thorough independent inspection every 12 months.

    "My brother Matthew and I have been in business together for 50 years and this is the first incident of this type that we have ever been involved in.

    "We are devastated as both a family and a business, and our heart goes out to everyone who has been affected by this accident."

    Mr Taylor paid tribute to the emergency services and members of the public who had helped in the aftermath of the crash.

    He added: "Our thoughts are with the people who have been injured and their families. We hope everyone makes a full recovery.

    "We are cooperating fully with the joint HSE and Police Scotland investigation.
    "It would be inappropriate to speculate on the cause of the accident until the investigation is complete."

    It is not the first time the park has experienced problems with its rides, including the Tsunami.
    Nine passengers, including children, were stranded for eight hours on the ride in July 2011 when it came to a halt 60ft (18.2m) above the ground. The malfunction was blamed on a broken lift chain.
    In March, eight people had to be rescued by firefighters when the park's Tornado rollercoaster ground to a halt 20 ft (6m) in the air.

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